Singapore public service sector first to use Workplace by Facebook

by HRD11 Nov 2016
The head of Civil Service, Peter Ong, recently announced that Singapore is the first country in the world to use Workplace by Facebook, the office-friendly version of the popular social networking site.

Ong announced the news at yesterday’s (10 November) PS21 Excellence through Continuous Enterprise and Learning (ExCEL) and said that 15 agencies and more than 5,000 public officers have already started using the platform.

However, this is just the first phase of its implementation and the plan is to have all 143,000 public servants connected by March early next year.

He noted that three positive things have already happened since they started using the platform:

1)    A reduced number of internal emails as major announcements were posted on the site;
2)    Senior leaders were able to connect with their staff “more frequently and more meaningfully”;
3)    An “explosion of activity” that brought together various groups of different sizes and domains.

“To me, this is clear proof that unless we dare to try, we will not be able to ride the new waves of technology of the future,” he said.

“While it is always good to learn from others has someone else done it elsewhere in the world, we should dare to try new things even if they have not been tried before."

Channel News Asia reported that “the move towards greater connectivity within the public service comes a few months after the government announced that public officers will have no access to the internet on their work computers by next June for security reasons.”

Vivian Balakrishnan, minister-in-charge of the Smart Nation Initiative, said that the move was not to restrict their internet access but rather to allow them to segregate secure email systems from other activities conducted online.

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